Everyday Inspirations:inspired by an other post……….

I read a post about self acceptance and I identify myself very much in it.

In particular the post’s author was saying how self acceptance creates authenticity and I cannot agree more. Most of my life I struggle with self acceptance.The whole me was never satisfying:my character,temper, as much as my physicality.It was so eradicated in me that I got to a stage where I was not even trying to overcome this feeling of being inadequate or judged anymore; to me it became a trait of my personality and ,like most people do ,I put in place my own cope mechanism.

To tell the true ,it was a very common one: I started to wear a mask,I create my own character who ,of course , was determined and strong. In a word very much self confident .I didn’t mean to deceive the people around me maliciously,it was more my way to cope with daily life and it suited me it worked…..for a while.People around me were happy.My mother had a perfect daughter,my husband had a strong independent wife who needs help in nothing……”she can manage”. Sometimes I couldn’t say where it was fictional and where it was not. I suppose I kind of identify myself in this part I was playing.Now,don’t get me wrong there was a lot of me in it but there was also a lot of pretending. The problem is when you pretend for too long,you will end up believing your own lie, until the day comes that your inner you and even your body rebel.I had panic attacks,i was constantly tense,unsatisfied,bitter. I had three car accident in 1 month……Something had to change…..ME. I felt exhausted,physically and mentally .I was the problem and I was the solution. It took a while,and I believe that the journey to self acceptance never finishes,but I made it through .I liberated my real me,I brought back what I was once and mix it with what I became as result of my life experience. I am not like my mother,I am not like my father, I might got some personalities traits from them but I am my own persona : I am made from my own experiences and beliefs .The life I live defines me. I stopped trying to please everybody,because that is not possible and not right. I started to please Me,because It is the only way to please the others too and truthfully. I took off my mask ,drop my character and started to be just me:take it or leave it,for me included, and I take it. I like being me.I like the spontaneity that came with it. Of course I left a lot people disappointed but unfortunately that’s the price to pay.If ever my daughters would ask me for advice ,the only one I would give them is to be always themselves. It doesn’t worth to put a mask on to hide our imperfections and our fears because sooner or later that mask won’t make us breath.There is no need to pretend to be better then we are because once we are ourselves we are also unique,authentic in our feeling,emotions,actions thinking and authentic will be the love,trust and esteem will be given.

Everyday inspirations:confession of a” map-phobic”

I have no sense of orientation at all. I can get lost in places and streets that I know for years.North,south ,east ,west tell absolutely nothing to me.When I go into town I still get lost if I don’t do my usual route. Never mind if I take the longest way,if it is the one I know it is fine because I know,at the end,I will get there.I am quite hopeless with maps too.Once I know from where to start I am ok but the starting point,locating myself in the map has always been a challenge.I remember a holiday in Spain.I was in my early twenties I couldn’t understand where I was exactly so I asked a local to show me in the map where I was and witch direction I had to take and for the first time I thought I had a clue about how to use a map. It seems easy peasy,I walked around Madrid all day without getting lost. Eventually I learned the trick and got my way around papers map,I thought. No,not really,the following day ,that I had to place myself in the map and decide witch direction to take,all on my own,I was back to square one. For years when travelling I relied on good souls I was asking for directions .Much easier then maps and,for me,much more effective.When I graduated and I moved to Milan to look for a job, I started to be called for job interviews, in different part of the city.I had to consult a map ,again. This time was even more complicated as I had to find the addresses through the map but,also,find the right metro or tram route to take to go where I had to be. I was dealing with multiple maps at one time. It was scary and confusing so I elaborated a strategy.I was checking the maps at home,find the address,find the way to get there and wrote everything down in a piece of paper that I was consulting on the way.It does sound like something that only someone with a very low intelligence would do,I know,but it worked. My then boyfriend ,now husband,was living in Milan for 2 years already and knew the city well enough.Obviously I never asked him for help with the maps as I knew I would get,help for sure,but also a very patronising look and tone that my proud and dignity refused to deal with. Only thing I asked him,it was the timing:like,how long,roughly,to go from A to B, so to be sure I gave myself enough time for my journey.Thankfully now things have changed. No ,I didn’t learn to use a map properly but I did learn to use Googgle Map!!!!!

I was actually doubtful at the beginning because I didn’t have really good experiences with the ” sat nav” in the car but under my husband pressure I started to use it.To me,best thing ever invented. I don’t ask for directions to anyone and I always know where I am in the map. I also discovered that it can find whatever you want near by in case of need.One day going into town I realised I was running out of petrol( it does happen to me…….I hate doing petrol,not for the action itself but because I actually hate spending money in petrol!)so I rang my husband ,as he drive this way nearly every morning ,to ask him if he knew if there was a petrol station near by and he said “check on google map”.I did. I was delighted with the new discover and amazed by what google map can do : me and google map together know no limits .Only thing sometimes it does bother me is the “voice”…….no,not the voice itself.She a very nice lady with a cute American accent ,the way she can be a bit annoying on repeating multiple times when you have to turn like you are death or are an idiot.I sometimes do get upset with her but I understand it is her job.

Everyday inspirations: “Faithless is he that says farewell when the road darkens.” — J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

I am not a religious person but I like to think about myself as a spiritual person.I believe in kindness and respect rather then in obeying commandments.Do I have faith ? Yes I do, just my faith has nothing to do with religion.I have faith in humanity, despite the many times I have been disappointed and I will be for sure again and again. I have faith in life.Many time in the past I have been told,in moments of crises: “don’t worry, what it is meant to you nobody will take it. ” and many times I thought :”gosh ,if someone else tells me that one more time I will kill them”.Well ,experience taught me that it is actually true. The loss of today is the gain of tomorrow. How many times we moan about something we couldn’t have for then realising that at the end because of that missed occasion we could welcome a better one.This is applicable to every aspects of life. Not to give up,accept what life is giving or not giving to you because at the end what it is really meant for you will come : this is faith for me.Faith can be everywhere, most difficult thing is to see it. By nature we think we know exactly what we want and what we need and we want it now. Too often by nature we don’t have the patience to wait and see; to sow and wait for the seeds to fully grow.Too often we leave the dark path when instead we should just keep walking a little bit further to see the light shine.

Everyday inspirations: a one day story.

Breakfast on a rainy morning

This morning we woke up with a very grey sky. It is just me and my husband ,our daughters stayed over at my parent’ s house yesterday evening. We overslept and got up with lazy limbs trying to decide where to have breakfast. Our holidays breakfast are usually slow . Time is never tight in the morning here. I got up first,have my 2 glasses of hot water and then I make the coffee. The balcony is small but big enough for a little table where we can drink our coffee and eat some biscuits while checking the online news. Nightshirts ,are the compulsory dress code. The girls prefer to have their breakfast inside but the door is on open and they can still enjoy the morning breeze. This morning we decide to go out for breakfast . I like a nice cappuccino and a croissant but I hate rushing in the morning, get up ,get dressed and ready to go at high speed. As much as the croissants are tempting I prefer my biscuits at low motion at home but, this morning is different. It is already late and dressing up ,straight after we get up ,and go it doesn’t bother neither me nor my husband, beside it is just the two of us,the process is quick and smooth. Once we are out we realised that those grey clouds have decided to let the rain fall. No thunders or lightning to warn us, just a sadden warm summer rain.We have to zig zag in between tourists strolling around with their umbrellas that, I thought ,were more dangerous then necessary considering it was only drizzling. We know where to go,it’s a nice little patisserie not far from where we are staying. We pick a table on the terrace, rain is not a problem because we are sheltered. We ordered our breakfast: 2 cappuccinos (very small.if you read my previous posts know what I’m talking about) and croissants filled with peach jam for me and custard cream for my husband. The rain stopped,the clouds starts to distance them self from one an other. A very timid sun tries to shine . The tourists face are shining too, with smiles : there is a hope that the day is not wasted.

Neither me nor my husband cope well with the heat .We rarely have lunch at the beach as those hours are definitely too hot for us,but today it seems the right day to do it. The weather seems to suit.It is not that sunny and the morning rain should have cooled the temperatures down . It is decided, we’ ll have a stroll and then go to the beach for a light lunch. We browse around the town main street for a while. We check out the shop’ s windows ,some of them advertising the final sales of the season, some other already displaying the winter fashion must have. I would like to take advantage of this beach/kids free morning to look for a couple of presents I want to buy for some friends but I soon give up because of my husband absence of patience.I am not used to go to shopping with him and now I know why,….if there was any doubt about it.

Lunch at the beach

It is nearly 1 o’ clock ,we briefly pop in at the apartment to wear our beach flip flop and go back out. The beach is just few metres away from our house .We are there . We already decided not to stop at the Kiosk straight in front of our place but to go to one of the following ones. We are halfway between two ,it is more warm and sunny then we expected. We thought it would stay cloudy but the sun keeps pushing his way through the clouds and when it can make it ,it shines at full power.

I don’t have my hat so I can feel the heat on my head ,I tell my husband we should stop and have lunch as I don’t want to walk under the sun anymore,actually neither does he. I have a toast stuffed with grilled vegetables and he has a club sandwich.

It is relaxing .We have a quick coffee and head home. Everything is still in low motion. We watch a late news edition and then I decide,very unusually ,to go to the beach early.My husband stays behind. He never comes down before 5.

Inspired by the sea

The beach is still deserted,probably most of the people are still deciding if the weather is trustable. I lay down my towel and move the beach bed so to have my head under the shadow. The sun is up but most of the parasols are still closed ,the sound of the waves to keep me company. I take my iPad from the bag and start to write. I never wrote at the beach ,only took notes on my phone to be elaborated later at home. I had my doubt about what successful this experiment could be but once I start I can’t stop. The light and sheer on the screen is sometimes annoying but I am concentrated,I am inspired. The words flow. The post looks already too long for a blog but ….never mind…I will break it in more then one post or paragraphs.I can’t stop now, it is coming along well,I think! I have been writing for a while now. The sun is completely out,the heat is back. I decide to take a break and go for a swim. I need to cool down my body temperature. In the very same moment I putting away my iPad I seen my husband arriving. Wow , only 4.30 very early for him. I am glad he is here . We go for a swim together . Rough green/ grey waves welcome us. The few children that are in the water are having the most fun. The adults complain about the chilly water but ,deep down , I am sure they are enjoying the waves too. I am! Rough waves bring us all back to childhood,we jump and dive into them and laugh when they take us by surprise,spontaneously like big kids. For once that we don’t have the girls with us and we don’t have to stay in the water for at least 1 hour my husband is quick to go out straight after his swim. I stayed behind ,this time. I like to indulge myself floating around. The water is a bit cold today but I can’t resist the fun of the waves.

I am out,it takes a while to dry my swimming suit. The sun is gone ,again. There is no much hope for it to come back,forecast are not very promising either and neither are those black clouds I see coming toward us. My husband leaves,he goes back to the apartment. He is bored he says,he prefers to go and watch some television. I stay,I will go bored watching television at home instead. I can’t watch tv during the day lately, it just bores me . I absolutely have nothing against tv but , for some unknown reason , I can’t watch tv at daytime anymore. Not only I find it boring but it makes me sad,melancholic. Evening time it is an other story. I always watch a bit of television after dinner. I take my iPad back out and start to write my story ,from where I left it. I am drown back into my writing but the atmosphere all around me has changed in the meanwhile. The beach populated,and nobody left despite the weather promises rain again. The noise quadruplicated from when I arrived. I suspect the mothers brought their kids down out of desperation, nothing was working to keep them under control in the house anymore. Teenagers gathered together telling loudly their latest adventures . Women in groups gossiping and talking most probably about the one of them is not there. My quiet inspiring time on the beach is gone: I put my iPad away, I fold my towel, grab my dress and flip flop and go home.

Evening time

Once I got home it is still early. It is around 6 o’clock and I am dying for a coffee. I put the moka on, get my mug of coffee and sit on the balcony. I am lazy, a bit bored, not willing to jump in the shower yet so I rang my mom ,chat for a while, speak to my girls too. We will go to collect them tomorrow morning . I am back to write. My husband is still watching tennis . I play tennis,for fun, but I can’t understand how he can spend hours looking at two people throwing a ball from onside of a court to the other. I am not a big fun of watching sport on the tv, not even the sports I like and play,but that is just me . Without realising it is nearly 8 o’ clock.He goes for his shower first,I follow. It is time to decide what to do about dinner. No way I will cook.It is holidays for me too! We go out ,walk for a while and then stop in a pizzeria we usually go . Dinner is tastefully and satisfying sorted,I could eat pizza every day. We don’t want to go home straight so we go for an other walk and a drink.

The evening is fresh,very nice to stay out,no sticky hot weather. We are sipping our g&t when the wind raises, and we can clearly smell the summer thunderstorm that is coming. All the lightnings we saw on the way ,they now make sense.

We rushed a little bit with our drinks and are nearly ready to go when the wind is sadden at high speed. The ashtrays are flying from the tables,the waiters are running around try to remove as much as they can from the terrace.The chairs are all on the ground ,the tables are sliding from one side to an other. All the customers are packed inside waiting terrified that an other hurricane would come , like last week. Fortunately,the worst has passed very quickly and without damages.

We leave the bar and make it home before the heavy rain starts. We are now watching television,an old episode of Midsummer Murders ,not exactly my husband favourite, but the only decent thing the are showing. It is nice tonight, we left the windows open as the the wind calmed down and the rain doesn’t come in but the nice cool breeze does. We won’t have difficult to fall asleep.

Everyday inspirations: Melisandre,Daenerys,Kim and Me.

I am probably one of the few person in the entire world who doesn’t watch “Game of Throne”.
I want to specify that this is not because I have something against this show, on the contrary ,those few episodes I randomly saw were absolutely amazing and engaging.
I am not watching it because I never did since the beginning, except for some replica at Christmas time last year, and by then it was far too late to start. I was already years behind in the series ,catching up was a mission impossible unless I slept,ate,drank,had a shower….did everything in front of television for few months!
So I am missing this great show,I am banned from many conversations as I don’t know whose kingdom is currently under siege and whose king has been assassinated last.
I am a rare specimen and not even because I chose it to be: only by the chance. I was not at the right time in front at the right tv channel.
I eventually started to get over my condition of outcast, and learned to go on with my life without any “Game of Throne knowledge ” until the Kardashians started to populate the mundane scene.
Here I was ,once again at the wrong time in the wrong place, except this time was absolutely intentional!!
I didn’t start to watch the first episode and have no intention to catch up with the Kardashians.
Very soon I am cut out ,again , from many topics of conversation but also from fashion discussion ,and this hurts most.
Apparently ,in fact,the tree sisters dictate the new rules of what is up or down in fashion and I wouldn’t now.
I always found reality show mortally boring.
Since the time of the first Big Brother.
I never really understood the pleasure on watching other people trapped like laboratory mouse in an apartment .
(The laboratory mouses are much more spontaneous in their action and reaction).
Let me have a little digression here: first Big Brother was what, like over 20 years ago???and new version are still populating our TVs screen!!!!
To me ,very low is the interest for watching anonymous people 24/7 going on with their average day, that is all but that!
I know now there is celebrities doing it. It is much more interesting!!!
Yes, celebrities who are called so , because in most of the cases they did the previous edition !
Well, if we are lucky we might see real celebrities: like singers buried from the spotlights by 20 years or so.
No,wait a minute those ones are more incline to participate to realities where they are sent away in deserted island and have to survive the hostile environment as much as the meanness of their fellow participants. Of course ,it is a challenge with themselves, they test their limits…….
My opinion: they go to loose weight, (VIP beauty farms are too expensive for them nowadays), in the hope of regaining a bit of success and decent money!
I know it is mean to say but ………seriously?..why would you humiliate yourself like that?????? It is behind my comprehension.
Now back to the Kardashians, why would I want to see, what 3 sisters and their mother, do with their days?
Apparently there are actually a lot of reasons why! The reality is going on for years and people keep following their spree of extravaganza.
Kim is an influencer now!
To me only good quality she has is that big bottom of hers,that makes normal ordinary women feeling a bit better about their back side, but I don’t think it is enough to justify her constant presence on the tabloids.
It is not enough to make her a role model to our daughters.
We all are a bit fascinated by the rich and famous but let them at least do something ,that requires more skill then marrying rappers,to gain their status and our curiosity and ,may be our esteem.
Am I to harsh?May be I am and may be it is also because I have never forgiven her for calling Ireland a “s… hole ” country .
But I bet her sisters secretly think and say even worst.
Well, can you blame them? Despite the big effort and despite being in the same show for years,they still are not as famous.
Still they are Kim Kardashian ‘s sisters.
In all of this i can’t not wonder what the father thinks:
He went from being one of the most famous American attorney involved in one of the most famous murder trial of all times ,to be Kim ‘s dad!!!
Poor guy!

Everyday inspirations: if we were having coffee……….

If I think about it, all of my conversations with my friends happen in front of a cup of coffee. Never mind if it’s deca or regular,it has to be coffee.

Yes, I know all the coffee I drink doesn’t go well with all the yoga I do but, at this point of my life, it is part of my identity.

I am on my third week of holidays in Italy, and starting to feel a bit homesick and friends sick but , may be , I am only coffee sick!

Most of you would wonder how can I be “coffee sick ” in Italy: “for God sake, Italy is the kingdom of coffee!!!”
It is indeed. the problem is the size of the coffee and the cappuccino they serve in the bars :toosmall!

It is fine at home, because I make my own mug of coffee but when out it is a pain!
I cannot satisfy my need of this amazing powerful drink.

And then, lets face it , the heat doesn’t go well with coffee ; unless it is iced coffee .
I have to admit it, Italians make great iced coffee but,once again, it is the wrong size.

So , if in this very same moment , I was home having coffee with my friends, I would probably be enjoying their company as much as the size of my cup of coffee!

In the meanwhile,  I very grateful keep enjoying my sunny holidays, drinking fresh soft drinks.

Everyday inspirations:midsummer fireworks

Since I was a child, in my hometown ,the main event of the summer are the fireworks made on the 15th of August.
I remember my mom bringing me to beach to watch them and, some times, we also had a midnight swim after the show.

At the time fireworks were something absolutely amazing; an act of magic!

Gradually ,over time,they lost their power to fascinate: they went from being a fascinating magical event to be boring or, worst ,to be too popular for a society busy to elevate itself .
A society entrapped in its own snobbery.

This year ,for the first time in a long time,we are still here on holidays on the day of the fireworks and we decided to go and watch them .
Most of our old friends are just too busy for joining in but ,also ,couldn’t care less.
“Fireworks are for tourists who doesn’t know better and don’t mind the crowd on the beach………”, they say .
Fireworks are nothing special anymore!
Except for us tacky tourist of course! So off we go.

We leave the house around 9.30(fireworks are supposed to start around 10.30)
so that we can have a stroll on the beach before.

All along the beach there is a promenade overlooked by hotels and apartments block.
The scene we are presented with is completely unexpected.
Every hotel terrace has musical bands and the guests are busy dancing and laughing .
Most of the apartment are empty as the inhabitants are all outside:
they joint the dinner tables all together and are outside drinking and eating,celebrating and waiting together for the show to start.

For one night ” the Bon Ton” is forgotten,there is no expensive sandals but only bare foots; elegant restaurants are replaced by plastic garden tables; posh buffets and exotic cocktails left their place to BBQs and local wine.

The atmosphere is amazing.
There is a contagious feeling of lightheartedness.
It is like to go back in time and I am glad my girls could experience all this.

Every kids should grow thinking “fireworks” are an act of magic .
Every adults should never forget ” fireworks” are the touch of magic in our lives.

Everyday inspirations: A letter to my old house

I am still on holidays .
It is early morning and I am on the balcony writing and checking emails,when I start thinking about my old house.

I didn’t think about it for a long time, in fact, I always being that type of person who ,once she takes a decision, doesn’t look back.
Past is past. I am quite good on drawing lines …….
(to speak the truth ,it is also a very good cope mechanism that keep my mental health steady ,but this is an other story.)

The thought of the house comes with a feeling of having left something unfinished.
I moved,I never looked back,I never gave an explanation.
In one sentence:I betrayed my house. My home of many years was discarded with no mercy.

I then decided to write a letter: A letter to my old house.

“Dear old house,
4 years passed since we moved and only now I realised how unfair I have been with you.
Once you were not serving the purpose anymore, we traded you with a new one,a bigger one,a closer one to where we needed to be.
The move didn’t go as smoothly and fast as I hoped so i became impatient to leave,unhappy to stay.
You had nothing to offer anymore and ,may be ,it was true ,but didn’t give me right to forget everything you gave already.
It was not an excuse for being ungrateful .
I forgot the emotions you gave us the first night we slept there,10 years previously ,with no furnitures but as happy as ever. Toasting with champagne sitting on the kitchen floor.
I forgot the feeling when we brought home ,to you ,our first child.

I was so busy organising the move and so excited to move that I never stopped a minute thinking about how you helped building my family,my life .
My family was born inside your walls.
My life, as I know it now, started inside your walls.

I can smell the odours linked to every single memory you witnessed.
I feel a sudden pain in my stomach ,I mistreated you so badly, I need to do something.
I need to make amend.
I need to apologise. I own you that ,because I left and never thank you for all the happiness you gave me and my family.

Dear old house, you were our first home,the place were everything started,and no other house(no matter how bigger or newer) will never be able to replace you in my heart .You will always have a special place in my memories,in our memories.

Hope you will find the way to forgive me,
With love
Your old owner.”

One day inspirations: the daily quote

“Smile in the mirror. Do that every morning and you’ll start to see a big difference in your life.”
Yoko Ono.

A long time ago my dear friend Abigail asked me why I was never smiling in the pictures.
At first I didn’t understand what she meant because I was actually smiling ,so she said :”you need to show your teeth to really smile”!
I told her that I never did because of my “vampire tooth “,(so called by my daughters).
Basically my left canine is quite pronounced,a kind of family signature,and I have always been very aware of it.
Honestly it can be very anti aesthetic.

So once I gave her my explanation she looked at me and just spat on my face hat it was all bullshitt (can I say that?.?..): I had a beautiful contagious smile and must show it.

This was the start of long series of pictures where I smile and I laugh,open mouth.
Since then I always smile and laugh showing my teeth and my pictures are much better.I might not be the most photogenic subject but I look happy and that makes me feel happy.

It is funny how laughing and smiling is now one of the most characteristic tracts of my personality.
I became more extroverted and all started from an imposed smile…….that slowly grew inside me!!!

This is why when I saw the above quote from Yoko Ono,I thought :”that is damned true!!! And worth a try…”…….and so I did.
Well, first few days ,you feel a bit dull and it is not really the most natural thing to do first thing in the morning ,but as days pass ,that smile that is reflected back to you is comforting and starts talking to you.
It is a smile that gives you peace.
A smile that becomes a state of mind.
A smile that reminds you every morning how lucky you are.
A smile that reminds you every morning that there is always a reason to smile in your life,no matter what.
A smile that ,even in the worst days, will tell you ,you can make it through.You are strong enough .

Thank you Abigail and Yoko Ono.

Everyday inspirations: a space and a time to write

I am not sure I really have writing habits,yet.
All day long I take mentally notes about what I feel and what I do but only in the morning I sit down at the desk in our home office and write.
A nice hot cup of coffee to keep me going and my dogs snoring at my feet to keep me company.
I like this little room ,it’s cosy and warm .It s a room to work,to produce.
Sometimes ,unfortunately,the time during the day is very tight so I write in the evening ,in bed.This is a setting that I particularly enjoy because it brings me totally out of reality.
My bedroom has always been my space,the only room in the house to be only mine ,(and my husband of course).No kids allowed.
Despite the fact I am tired, I noticed that when I start writing in the evening I completely loose track of time and sometime I keep going until my eyes shut defeated by tiredness .